Our 12 day Best of Burma tour allows travellers to discover this once isolated nation, which is brimming with sacred sites and heavenly landscapes just waiting to be explored, and possesses an intriguing culture based on time-old traditions. This week’s photo showcase offers an inside peek as to what you can expect on this classic tour of Burma with us, from the dynamic city of Yangon and magnificent history of Mandalay, to the stupa-filled plains of Bagan and heavenly Inle Lake.
To find out more about our Best of Burma itinerary, visit our website.
Arrive into the fascinating city of Yangon, the former capital of Burma, and explore a city reaching for the future yet caught in the past. Longi-clad pedestrians meander through the warren of historic streets lined with colonial buildings while the aromas of street stalls linger in the air. Sitting atop Singuttara Hill, the gleaming golden stupa of Shwedagon Pagoda (pictured) is the city’s centrepiece.
Sitting on the east bank of the Ayeyarwady River is Mandalay, the last royal capital of Burma and the next stop on tour. Along with its numerous monasteries and pagodas, one of the main highlights here is the magnificent complex of Mandalay Palace (pictured). Surrounded by a moat with finely built walls and crowing wooden pavilions, it serves as a reminder of Burma’s once great empire.
3. Mahagandayon Monastery
Continuing on to the ancient city of Amarapura, we visit the Mahagandayon Monastery – one of the largest teaching monasteries in the country. Founded in 1914, the monastery is home to several thousand young monks who live an extremely disciplined way of life. If you happen to arrive on time for mealtime you will be able to see hundreds of robe-clad monks queuing up for their lunch.
4. U Bein Bridge
Another stop in Amarapura is made at the U Being Bridge, the oldest and longest teak bridge in the world which is set over the enchanting Taungthaman Lake. Constructed in the 1800s, the bridge is made up of thousands of pillars and wooden planks, and while some have been replaced over time, it continues to play an important role in local life as well as being a popular spot for travellers.
5. Boat trip on the Ayeyarwaddy
Leaving Amarapura, hop on board a scenic cruise of the Ayeyarwaddy River towards Bagan. After all the exploring of previous days now is the perfect time to sit back, relax and take in the surrounds as the vessel plies its course past green fields and scenes of everyday life en route. The Ayeyarwaddy River is one of the most important waterways in Burma, flowing from the north to the south of the country.
6. Nyaung-U Marketplace
Upon arrival in Bagan, head into the riverside town of Nyaung-U and into the hustle and bustle of the morning market, which is overflowing with anything from freshly caught fish and colourful fruits, to wicker baskets and vibrant textiles. Browse local wares, mingle with vendors and bargain for a sale, and snap a few photos as the locals go about their daily business.
7. Bagan Stupas
Journey on to the undisputed champion of Bagan, the scores of Buddhist temples scattered across its vast dusty plains. Sitting on the banks of the Ayeyarwaddy River, this iconic site is home to over 4400 glistening temples, pagodas and stupas and is best experienced in the golden hue of dawn from the dreamy heights of a hot air-balloon.
8. Inle Lake
Last stop on tour is Inle Lake, an enchanting place made up of floating farms, stilted villages and crumbling stupas. The lake is also home to the Intha people who live along the shore and on the lake itself. Their unique style of rowing, standing with one leg on their small rowboats and the other wrapped around its oar, is legendary.
9. Ngapali Beach
If after the tour has come to an end you’d like to extend your stay and enjoy some rest and relaxation on one of Burma’s beautiful beaches, why not head to Ngapali. This idyllic palm-fringed beach has traditional fishing village roots, but today is a popular get away for those looking to enjoy sun, sand and sea. While away the days by the beach and simply watch the world go by.